By Gabe Schapiro
The Golden State Warriors (31-22) lost a heartbreaker to the Miami Heat (37-14), 111-110, Wednesday night, at Oracle Arena. The Warriors looked horrible early before storming back and making a game of it. It eventually became the LeBron James and Stephen Curry show, in an epic duel of greatness. After beating Miami on their home turf last time these squads faced off, tonight the Heat exacted some revenge. James hit a last second three-pointer to stun the Golden State faithful, icing the victory for Miami.
For much of the early going the Warriors offense looked hopeless. They came out of the gate cold, and for a time it looked like they might lose a blowout. However, they rose to the occasion, and pushed back against the defending champions.
Golden State trailed by as many as 21-points, a few minutes into the third quarter. Thanks in large part to Curry and some impressive paly from Harrison Barnes on the bench, the Warriors began mounting a comeback. They went on a 20-2 run, and crawled all the way back to take the lead on a Curry three seconds into the fourth.
The momentum swung back in the Heat’s favor, who re-took the lead and held it for much of the quarter. With 47 seconds left, Curry nailed a 15-foot jumper to tie it up. Then he struck again, making an impressive lay-up in traffic with just 14 seconds remaining, which turned into a three-point play, giving the Warriors the 110-108 lead.
In their final possession Miami predictably went to James, who had been on fire all game. Andre Iguodala stuck with him, but the King couldn’t be stopped. He nailed a deep, fade-away trey with just 0.2 seconds left, lifting the Heat to victory.
Curry was the obvious standout for the Dubs. He scored a team-high 29 points on just 14 shots, to go along with seven assists and five rebounds. David Lee contributed a double-double, posting 21 points and 11 boards. Barnes was big off the bench, compiling 14 points and five rebounds. Draymond Green started in the place of Andrew Bogut once again, and filled up the stat sheet. He added eight points, eight boards, two steals, and three blocks.
For the Heat, the unstoppable James finished one assist shy of a triple-double. He finished with a game-high 36 points, 13 rebounds, and nine assists. Chris Bosh had 19 points and five boards. Michael Beasley and Norris Cole had good games off the bench, contributing 16 and 10 points respectively.
Despite the loss, the Warriors did well to come-back from such a large deficit against one of the league’s best teams. It wasn’t the positive note they were hoping for heading into the All Star break, but there were positives to be found. They’re back in action on Wednesday, February 19, when they’ll be traveling to Sacramento to take on the Kings.